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Determined and very quick, despite a sore shoulder, Caroline Garcia dominated world No.3 Coco Gauff in the last 16 of the WTA 1000 Miami on Monday (6-3, 1-6, 6-2). She hadn’t beaten a top 10 player since winning the 2022 Masters title.

This is perhaps the benchmark match she’s been chasing since her title at the 2022 Masters. On Monday, in the last 16 of the WTA 1000 in Miami, Caroline Garcia delivered an extremely convincing performance to eliminate world No. 3 Coco Gauff in 1h43 (6-1, 3-6, 6-2).


The Frenchwoman launched herself like a speeding bullet in this extremely dynamic round-of-16 match, and immediately took the American by the throat, both with her very high percentage of first shots (94% after her first sixteen serves), some of which were kicks rather than power shots, and with her commitment on every shot, particularly when searching for her opponent’s weak spot on the forehand. After twelve minutes, Garcia was leading 3-0 and Gauff had yet to see a game point.

Unperturbed by the gusts of wind, the Frenchwoman held her nerve with authority at the end of the first set, which was concluded in 37 minutes (6-3). At once lively on the point and calm off it, she no longer resembled the player in search of her bearings of the last fifteen months.


It was then that the match took a completely different turn. At the same time as Gauff was gaining in consistency, Garcia was losing her punch. Clearly, the right shoulder that has been giving her trouble of late was getting the better of her, and her serve was taking a nose-dive. At the end of an express second set, in which she had only one first ball out of three, she called in the WTA physio, who manipulated the joint before the start of the final set.

Trailing 15-40 on her serve in the first game, Garcia got back into the rhythm of her opening game, to regain her momentum and break 3-0 against a frustrated Gauff. In control of her arsenal and in good spirits, the Frenchwoman maintained the right intensity. The American owed it to a full-length lob not to have to save a 5-1 ball against her. The Frenchwoman hit her first ace of the match after 1h38 of play, to lead 5-2. A few minutes later, she signed her victory on a final break, with a big shout and a big smile.


Whereas between July and November 2022, Garcia had won eight of her ten matches against top 10 players, she then went on to lose seven in a row against the elite. Since her phenomenal end to the 2022 season, which saw her rise to No. 3 in the world rankings, she had only once managed to beat a Top 20 player. In the quarter-finals, she will face the winner of the match between American Danielle Collins (53rd) and Romanian Sorana Cirstea (24th).


This post is originally from L’Équipe